CFL Countdown

STEVE COAD -- London Free Press

, Last Updated: 7:15 AM ET

Toronto (2-2) at Montreal (2-2)

The skinny: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. (TSN, RDS). If the Montreal Alouettes aren't grumpy going into this one, they should be. The Als, thought to be so staunch on defence, fell 51-46 to the previously winless Winnipeg Blue Bombers last week. The Als got busy in the fourth, outscoring the Bombers 27-14 and briefly snagging the lead at 44-43 with 2:51 left. Bottom line: the Als couldn't stop the Bombers, who scored just 50 points in four season-starting losses. They couldn't stop Bomber back Charles Roberts, who ran for 195 yards on 20 carries. And they couldn't stop a 56-yard connection between quarterback Kevin Glenn and wideout Milt Stegall that put the Bombers in front for good with 1:43 left. Great D? Not the Als.

Cody's call: Argos 30-20

Ottawa (2-3) at Saskatchewan (3-2)

The skinny: Tomorrow, 9 p.m. Like Montreal, which lost to Winnipeg, the Roughriders were expected to win handily last week in Calgary. Well, it didn't happen. The prognosticators -- a dull lot, by all accounts -- saw Calgary as a team rebuilding, light on offence and coming off a 33-18 loss to Ottawa. In the Roughriders, they saw a club coming off a 32-13 win over Hamilton, strong on defence and possessing an attack that hardly seemed to skip a beat with Nealon Greene at quarterback rather than Henry Burris, who jumped to Calgary in the offseason. Before Calgary's 44-18 win, no one saw Burris playing so well. People hinted that Burris and Roughriders head coach Danny Barrett had a rocky relationship last year. Well, Burris got his revenge. Ottawa, hot at home, is cold on the road.

Cody's call: Roughriders 33-17

Calgary (2-2) at B.C. (4-0)

The skinny: Tomorrow, 10 p.m. (TSN). It would be so easy just to pick the Lions and forget it. They're at home, they're unbeaten, and they're very good. The rebuilding Stamps, especially quarterback Henry Burris, got their licks in in a 44-18 victory over Saskatchewan last week. So, Calgary appears they're headed in the right direction. The Lions, meanwhile, are off to a flying start. Quarterback Dave Dickenson is a big reason. Injured a lot last year, Dickenson has completed a league-best 74.4 per cent of his passes this season (96-of-129), and boasts a 112.9 efficiency rating, also No. 1 in the CFL.

Cody's call: Lions 27-17

Hamilton (0-4) at Edmonton (4-1)

The skinny: Saturday, 7 p.m. (CBC). Good move, Ticats -- signing quarterback Khari Jones, the CFL's player of the year in 2001, that is. If you look around the league, most teams have to be happy with their QBs. Not so, Hamilton. Forty-year-old Danny McManus is struggling and replacing him with backup Marcus Brady isn't the answer. Danny Mac's numbers are awful, as his mediocre 53.4 efficiency rating would indicate: He's completed just 50.4 per cent of his tosses (70-of-139) for 832 yards. While just one of his heaves has gone for a touchdown, six have been intercepted. McManus gets the start this week in Edmonton but if he stumbles, don't be surprised if head coach Greg Marshall turns quickly to Jones. McManus's skills have been eroding for two or three years and this year's Ticats are paying for a problem that should be been dealt with by a past regime.

Cody's call: Eskimos 33-21

Winnipeg (1-4) at Toronto (2-2)

The skinny: Monday, 4 p.m. (TSN). This is where the Argos pay for having last week off. Two games in five days is as tough as it gets. And if you're thinking it's only Winnipeg that they're playing, well, remember the Bombers soared over the Alouettes 51-46 last week. Winnipeg had QB Kevin Glenn, all healed up after missing three games with a high ankle sprain, back for the Montreal game. I happen to think, he, not Tee Martin, is the man to lead the ka-blooie Bombers. Put Glenn's passing together with Charles Roberts' running, and you've got a good one-two punch. The Argos? Well, they'll be bloodied, bumped, battered and bruised -- beatable, too.

Cody's call: Bombers 27-17

Season record Last week: 2-2; overall 14-6


Videos

Photos